Amino acids are essential for the human body as they are the building blocks for proteins. The proteins in the body help in tissue repair, produce enzymes essential for the function of the body and build cells.
Moreover they are responsible for the production of viral and bacterial antibodies, build RNA and DNA nucleoproteins and allow oxygen to be transported to various parts of the body.
There are two types of amino acids, essential and non essential. While the essential amino acids like leucine, lysine, glutamic acid, arginine, tyrosine, praline, glycine, serine and others need to be obtained from external food sources and amino acid supplements. In contrast to this your body can produce the non essential amino acids on its own.
Among the most popular essential amino acids are the branch chain amino acids which consist of the three essential amino acids namely leucine, valine and isoluecine.
Derived from animal and vegetable proteins along with food sources such as yogurt, miso and juices, these amino acids are popular among bodybuilders. In combination with arginine and glutamine, the BCAA help the body recover faster, promotes muscle growth and improves overall health. Other essential amino acids specifically meant for athletic support include whey protein, ornithine and carnitine.
In addition to this the branch chain amino acids along with creatine also help in post surgery recovery. Glutamine amino acids helps in building muscles and are used actively by many body builders and weight lifters. This amino acid is also beneficial in the treatment of immune deficiencies, traumas and even cancer.
People suffering from depression, anxiety and restlessness can greatly benefit from regular intake of essential amino acids. This is because the essential amino acids can lead to an increase in the neurotransmitter like GABA in the brain which can reduce depression significantly.
A lack of glutamine can cause fatigue, depression and alcohol cravings. Children with ADHD and other neurotransmitter deficiencies can benefit greatly by the intake of amino acids.
Elderly people can gain the benefits of amino acid supplements. Taurine amino acid is known to slow down the aging process while keeping the energy levels up and aiding in the digestion process.
While in the majority of cases the intake of these supplements is not accompanied by ay side effects, excess of amino acids can lead to restlessness and rapid heart beat while putting a load on the kidneys. It is essential to couple thse supplements with vitamin B6 and C to help better metabolism and absorption.